It’s an annual tradition for the Lost Map collective and those that follow them, their many fans and loyal regular gig attendees, to head to what they title Christmas Baubles. Curated by Edinburgh-based Kid Canaveral, a day of music and drinking is one that laments the festive season for many, with a full line up of music, with a different bill year after year, nine to be exact.
This year’s line up is deemed to be one of the best yet by many of the attendees, with curators themselves, Kid Canaveral kicking it all off at 2pm, music from Happy Spendy, a chat with Malcolm Middleton, and Sparrow and the Workshop’s Jill Lorean, and new Lost Map talent Callum Easter. However, I missed all of that, arriving in from the West but managed to catch some darn fine music all the same.
Arriving during the interval, the hall was sparse but soon filled up again as David MacGregor and pals took to the stage in the form of his newest project, Broken Chanter. Incorporating Jill from Sparrow and the Workshop on strings, Gav Prentice from Over the Wall, now ULTRAS on guitar, and Audrey Tait from Hector Bizerk on drums, this is Scottish fusion of fine talent waiting to burst. Performing tracks from the new album to be released next year, Broken Chanter were on good form, and certainly got me hooked enough to be keeping my ear to the ground for the album release date.
Next up was Big Joanie, whose sound is hard to pin point but there is absolutely no shortage of punk from these lasses. Influenced by Riot Grrrl, The Ronettes, The Breeders and yet also Tina Turner, that amalgamation of sounds ends up on stage pleasing the crowd. They even turned TLC number, No Scrubs, into discordant riff noise, adding their own unique trademark.
Then there was Seamus Fogarty, with Aram on drums and Joe on bass, which was the perfect addition for a day such as this, his usual mix of humour and folktronica has many edging to the front for a wondrous set. Performing tracks such as Van Gogh’s Ear and Carlow Town, with his comic patter intermittent holds the smiles on the audience, as does the stunningly choreographed dancing that comes with Carlow Town. A new age form of vitamin D for any SAD sufferer, I swear.
The Spook School were last on to perform before the classic end to a festive night, karaoke, or as run by Synergy’s Chris McGarry, McGarryoke. Finishing the evening with Edinburgh’s finest queer indie-pop and then karaoke seemed fitting for the festive season and kept me to the bitter end until an upstanding member of Meursault’s band suggested we duet Whitney Houston and I was off. Seriously, a lovely tradition to get the festive season going, and this will not be last time attending a Baubles.